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Skin Benefits from Collagen

Skin Benefits from Collagen

Last week, I talked about how Vital Proteins has helped with my personal recovery and running.  This week I thought I would talk about other benefits such as skin!

me vital proteins

I’ve mentioned in many random posts, but my skin has never been flawless.  I wasn’t blessed with those genes.  I see a dermatologist frequently.  Through high school and college, my skin went through cycles of being worse than a preteen going through puberty.

After using Vital Proteins for nearly 6 months, I’ve found it to help with my skin, hair, and nails.

Keep in mind I’m not a doctor, and this is my personalized experience.  This isn’t something to help solve skin issues, but hopefully, you’ll notice benefits for your skin as well.

How do Vital Proteins Help Skin?

Vital Proteins are a beauty-specific product to support the skin’s moisture, improve elasticity, tone, and vibrancy.

What Even makes Skin Healthy?

Not breaking out?

Skin is a lot harder to describe as “healthy.”  There isn’t a magic food that makes skin healthier.  You can’t just eat more, and you have healthy skin. There isn’t a magical pill or potion.  Plus everyone has different skin.  There are also plenty of uncontrollable factors such as genetics and age.

As I mentioned last week, collagen is a protein in the body’s connective tissues.  As we age, our natural collagen production decrease.  This is how wrinkles appear, among many fine lines.

What are some Key Vitamins for Healthier Skin?

Collagen: Since this post is primarily about collagen, we should start there right?  Collagen is one of the most significant factors in keeping your skin healthy.  Before taking collagen, I had no idea how important and beneficial it was.

Your body naturally produces collagen but Vital Proteins Collagen Peptides are a healthy natural source of collagen.

Antioxidants: Antioxidants seems like a “power” nutrition word. Merely saying antioxidant makes you sound healthier but what is it? An antioxidant means it can bind to electrons and neutralize free radicals in the body.

Antioxidants are found in many foods but most commonly in both fruits and vegetables.  A few sources of antioxidants include berries, grapes, dark chocolate, and mushrooms.

Vitamin C: Vitamin C supports the production of collagen.  You can find Vitamin C in most citrus fruits like oranges, pineapple, and my favorite: mango.

Vitamin E: Vitamin E has an antioxidant effect too. A few foods high in Vitamin E are avocado, spinach, and seeds such as sunflowers seeds or almonds.

Right now, the Vital Proteins product I like the most for my skin, hair, and nails is the Beauty Greens.

Personally, I like the “greenness” of the drink itself.  I like to add 2 scoops into a glass of milk with ice.  Boring but it tastes good to me.  It’s hard to make a green smoothie look good but I can assure you it is.

Some of the benefits I’ve noticed with my skin are:

  • Promoting collagen formation, affecting hair, skin, and nails
  • Supporting a healthy glow
  • Enhancing skin clarity and smoothness
  • Increasing the body’s natural moisture level, improving hair, skin, and nails
  • Helping to maintain firm skin

Since beginning to take Vital Proteins about 6 months ago, I’ve seen small changes in my skin.  My skin is a lot smoother.  It does not take the place of going to the dermatologist every few months, but I have had success with it.  While I am an ambassador, I have noticed an improvement beforehand.  My skin is the most randient it’s been since high school!

Windy day down the shore.

A post shared by Hollie (@fueledbylolz) on

 

Other Vital Protein and Collagen Posts:

Recovering with Vital Proteins and Collagen

Questions for you:

How do you take care of your skin?

Do you take Collagen or Vital Proteins?  Have you noticed a difference?

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Making Strides 5k (19:08)

Making Strides 5k (19:08)

Last weekend I decided to hop into a local race down in Pine Hill, NJ.  The race benefited program planning for Ovarian Cancer awareness, which is near and dear to my heart.

I knew it would be smart to get some faster miles on my legs before racing the Broad Street Run this weekend.  While my tailbone hasn’t bothered me while running over the last few days, I hadn’t raced anything, and I didn’t want to jump into a 10-mile race, not knowing what to expect.

I arrived at the race around 8 am, signed up, and warmed up.  I walked over to the starting line on the local track.  I’ve never started a 5k on a track.  I finished several races on a track and races that ended on a track, but this race did a loop around the track and left.

At 9 am we were off.  The lap around the track was interesting.  The walk started directly after, so we had walkers to cheer us on.  I high fived a little kid as I completed my first loop.  We ran onto the field, and the headed towards the road.  During the first half mile, I found myself in second place overall.  I stayed there the entire time and ran the entire race by myself.  The first mile incorporated track, grass, dirt, and road.  It felt like it took forever.  Realistically it was my fastest mile in the last month, and I hit mile 1 in 5:49.  To be honest, I was shocked!

As I went into mile 2, I realized I probably took the race out too fast.  I wasn’t tapered, and the week prior had been not glamorous.  The second mile looped around a baseball field and headed towards a neighborhood.  I thought I was going the wrong way, but luckily the volunteer pointed in the right way.  My legs began to feel sore, but I was able to hold a 6:08 mile.

making strides 5k pine hill nj

During the last mile, I was hurting.  My tailbone felt fine, but my legs did not feel good.  I was running alone, and I knew I had paid the price of taking the race out too quickly.  I’ve learned that lesson before, but it’s never fun in a 5k. I just focused on finishing the race.  We ran back around the field, and entered the track around 2.9 miles and ran a final loop around the track.

I ran the last mile in 6:13 and finished in 19:08.  Do I think the course was a little long?  Probably, but I’m happy with the result and even happier my tailbone felt good. The mix of terrain made it a more challenging, but fun course.

I ran a similar time at the Phillies 5k last month, which was windy but still challenging.  I haven’t run any fast 5ks lately due to weather, terrain, or life.  I feel good about the race and that my tailbone has finally turned a corner.

Questions for you:

Have you ever run on the track?

Would you prefer to run on trails or pavement?

Training: Achy Bums and Easy Weeks

Training: Achy Bums and Easy Weeks

Last week, I took it much easier for a few reasons.  As most people know, I fell at the April Fools half marathon a week ago.  While it was still a good race, it left my tailbone sore.  It’s not broken but it does ache.

Monday: OFF
Tuesday: 20 minute run
Wednesday: 30 minute run
Thursday: OFF
Friday: Easy 30 minutes
Saturday: Easy 60 minutes
Sunday: 6 mile tempo run (10 miles total)

Thoughts:

I was signed up to do a 5 mile race this weekend that I DNSed.  To be honest, I have no doubt I could have finished well.  The weather was ideal to run but I didn’t want to push my tailbone too quickly.  I am disappointed, however, I think I made the smarter decision.

I did a 6-mile tempo instead.  My miles ranged from 6:55-7:12.  It was nice for something a bit faster.

 

Tailbone Issue:

It’s a hard problem to explain.  My tailbone aches, especially when I sit.  In fact, my doctor told me standing actually puts far less pressure on it and the more I stand the better…I am not standing 24 hours a day.  I bought a donut pillow to sit on which removes the pressure off of my butt too.  I can walk and run normally (my gait does change at all), but I can feel the ache whether I’m running or not.

I’m hoping to jump into a local race next week to get some speed before Broad Street.  The last month hasn’t gone, “exactly” how I would like.  I’m in shape, but I’m not in the same shape as when I set my half marathon PR.  I’m fine with that.  The next few months, I want to stay healthy and work on shorter distances anyway.

Posts of the Week:

Benefits of Massages for Runners

April Fools Half Marathon

Questions for you:

Have you ever fallen on your tailbone?

How was your week of training?

Benefits of Massages for Runners

Benefits of Massages for Runners

Since college, I’ve gotten massages with the sole purpose to help my running and stay as injury free as possible. Many people have wondered why, when there is a plethora of sticks, foam rollers, and other gadgets you can use.  Thinking out loud, no matter how many foam rollers I use, including the R8, they don’t get as deep as a professional.

Benefits of Massages for Runners

What Kind of Massages are Best for Runners?

Deep Tissue:

This is my personal favorite type.  It’s what most people think when they think “massage”.  A deep tissue massage that works the entire body or can focus on specific tight spots.  Due to how I run, I get very tight calves frequently.  In turn, this pulls down on my plantar fascia.  When I feel a bout of plantar fascitis beginning, I get a deep tissue massage on my calves.  This usually takes care of it.

Personally, I try to get a deep tissue massage once a month.  While pricey (usually between $60-100, depending on where you live), I’ve found it has saved me a lot of muscular injuries.

Active Release Technique (ART):

ART is relatively new to me and I began getting ART from Dr. Kemenosh and his associates after my second marathon.  ART is designed to break up scar tissue from an injury or issue and improve mobility.

ART  is better for if  you have a specific injury  that has resulted in scar tissue.  For me, I became more familiar with it, was when I pulled something in my butt during my second marathon.  Since there are so many layers of fascia in your glutes, ART was better to break it up.  Dr. Kemonosh has fixed many different issues I’ve had from tight calves, to IT band issues, to the orginal butt issue.    As I’m recovering from my fall and tailbone injury, they are helping to speed the process up.

At Home Foam Rollers:

There are a lot of new and fancy foam rollers on the market now.  From the heavy duty R8 to the basic massage stick.  Self-massage will offer many of the same benefits, however, if you are like me you’ll never be able to go as deep into the knots as a professional.  They are great proactive tools.

When Should You Get a Massage?

I made the mistake early on, to get a massage within 48 hours of a race.  I felt stiff and my legs had definetely not recovered.  For me, it usually takes a full 48-72 hours to recover from a deep tissue massage.  I don’t plan any hard workouts, races, or fast runs until then.  If I have a race that weekend, I’ll try and schedule a massage either Tuesday or Wednesday.

I usually like to wait a day or two after a race because my legs are sore and tender as well.  After my last

Think of massage as a workout where deep pressure can cause some muscle soreness. You don’t want to layer too many sources of muscle soreness so it’s best to wait 1-2 days after a hard workout or race to get your massage.

Questions for you: 

Do you get massages?

What kind of proactive things do you do for running?

Training: Good Weather and Bad Weather

Training: Good Weather and Bad Weather

Last week went moderately well.  The goal was to finish the April Fools half marathon on Sunday.  As most people know from last year, it’s the race that broke me mentally.  It wasn’t the race, or one reason, but a series of events that you can read more here.

Anyway, the week itself was good.  Going into the race, the weather didn’t look great.  It wasn’t as bad as the Shamrock in 2016 or the Broad Street Run, but it wasn’t great weather.

Monday: Easy 60 minutes
Tuesday: Easy 60 minutes
Wednesday: 12x400s averaging 88 seconds
Thursday: Easy run with Skip
Friday: Rest
Saturday: Easy run
Sunday: April Fools Half (1:26.08)

12x400s averaging 88 seconds with 400 easy jog in between

I haven’t been doing a lot of workouts, lately, but that was one of the better workouts I’ve had.  The weather was good, and I felt strong.  Not much more to say.  I felt as though I finally started to feel “good”.

April Fools Half Marathon (1:26.08)

On paper, it looks as if I ran 9 seconds faster than last year and 4 minutes slower than my recent PR.  The race had a headwind and tailwind.  Since the race is on the Oceanfront, the wind is magnitude. It was the hardest headwind I’ve ever battled.  There were so many times I wanted to give up from the wind but didn’t.  Some of the miles in the wind were around 7:15.  My effort was there, and it was a strong race for me.

As many people know, a pedestrian darted across the boardwalk around mile 12.  The cyclist told her to get out of the way, I (not as nicely) yelled to get out of the way, but she ignored everything.  The wind and slick boardwalk made it impossible for me to move that quickly out of her way.

We collided.

I fell completely on my butt and laid there for a few seconds.  In a matter of 5 seconds, I decided I was going to finish, got up, and ran.  it was a race that broke me mentally last year, and I wanted to finish. When I first got up, my adrenaline was pumping.  I wasn’t in any noticeable pain and I ran normally to the finish.   After I finished, and let my body cool down (I didn’t run at all…cool down meaning awkwardly stand and talk, and change clothing).  I also took a few minutes to process what happened.  To be honest, I’m not 100% proud that I wasn’t more cautious about finishing the race.  Looking back, I think I still would have got up and finished but I am not going to say it was the smartest thing to do.

Later in the day, my tailbone hurt.  It’s bruised and hurts more to sit.  It doesn’t radiate anywhere and only hurts in one location.  If I don’t have any noticeable improvement by Wednesday, I’ll get an Xray.

Other then that, I feel good about the week.  I’ve been focusing on rest and recovery.  I’ve been working on “doing the little things” such as sleep and resting, and I do believe it’s helping.

Posts from the Week:

Three Years of Marriage

ON Cloud Shoe Review

Questions for you:

How has the weather been around you?  

Training Log Last Week: Will Winter Ever Go Away?

Training Log Last Week: Will Winter Ever Go Away?

The goal of last week was to continue to feel better and I feel like I accomplished that.  I wanted to find a 5k to race, but nothing interested me so I didn’t.  I don’t particularly like going into a longer race like the April Fools half, having not raced recently, but sometimes that is how it goes.

me running

Anyway-

Monday: Easy 45 minutes/deep tissue massage
Tuesday: Easy 60 minutes
Wednesday: Rest
Thursday: 12×400 6 min pace
Friday: Easy 45 minutes
Saturday: Easy 90 minutes
Sunday: 12 mile long run with progression

My running had a few hiccups last week. It didn’t go perfectly, but it went and it went a little better than the week before.

12x400s (average 6:00 min pace)

I had planned to do my workout Wednesday but I woke up late, and my legs just felt stiff.  I knew the workout wouldn’t go as well trying to cram it into a short period, so I just rested.  I felt better the next day.  Sadly, when I got to the track it was occupied.  I did my 400s in a loop around the parking lot on pavement and sidewalk (not where there were moving cars).  I felt good, and it was motivational, but it was windy.  It was my first workout in a few weeks so I’m pleased with that.

12 mile Progression

This run was probably my best in a few weeks.  I started off easy and the last 7 miles, I began cutting down from 6:50, with my final few miles around 6:29.  I felt strong during the entire run, and it definitely gave me more confidence than I’ve had in a while.

Other than that, I’m pleased with my running.  The week before, I took several days off and I’ve been focusing on getting as much sleep as possible.  It’s definitely helped I feel like I’m slowly starting to break out of my mini burnout.  I’m hoping to run well at the April Fools half on Sunday, but the weather is not looking promising.

My goal is to finish strong and mentally happy, which is something I did not achieve last year. 

 

Posts from the Week:

What I Pack in My Hiking Bag
Rest Weeks Save Training Cycles
March Training

Questions for you:
How was your week?
What is the weather like where you are?

Rest Weeks Save Training Cycles

Rest Weeks Save Training Cycles

Over the last few months, my running has gone well.  I PRed in the Phoenix Half marathon and ran one of my best executed races at the Shamrock Half marathon.  Running felt great, until it didn’t.

First, my body was tired at the Adrenaline 5k.  Then I felt exhausted after the Phillies 5k the week after.  My body caught up with me, and by last Monday I was exhausted.

My college coach once said: rest weeks save seasons.

But, I didn’t listen to it last year when I had similar red flags.  In all, it turned into burnout, and I took most of spring and summer off.  Had I taken a week or two off, I might have been in a different spot last year.

Rest Weeks Save Training Cycles

Why Are Rest Weeks Beneficial?

If you don’t recover from hard races, workout, or runs, you won’t get faster.  Let’s be honest though, and that is much easier said than done.

Training for anything is exhausting. Each week, you head out the door on tired legs preparing for one race. If you don’t train enough, you could end up short of your goal or even injured.  However, if you train too hard, you could find yourself with an injury or fatigued during the race start.  The exact feeling I had at the Atlantic City half marathon last year.

So What are Some Signs You Should Take a Rest Week?

You Haven’t Taken a Rest Week Recently:

Well isn’t that easy?  If you haven’t had a rest week in a while, consider adding one to your training.  Even if you feel “good,” extra rest doesn’t hurt anyone.

You’re Exhausted:

Exhaustion is not just physical fatigue but mental too. It’s something I started to experience and what led to my few days off last week.  It’s the feeling of “blah” that makes you feel like you don’t want to be out there.

A Few Ways to Stop a Burn Out:

First, stop running.  It won’t help the situation.

  • Find another hobby: For me,  running is fun, but I enjoy many other things include hiking and painting.  Find another hobby that you enjoy and to fill your time.
  • Massages: For me, I find deep tissue massages, Graston, and ART to be the best.
  • Cross Train: It’s not my first recommendation, as I do believe people occasionally need full rest but if you find yourself much happier cross training, do that instead.

Burn out happens to most people.  I’ve learned the hard way, that running through it won’t help the matter.  In short, most solutions are simple: take some time off.  For some people it takes a few days, for some, it’s a few months.  Like an injury, if you catch it earlier before later, you’ll be much better off.

You don’t gain fitness in a few days, and you don’t lose either.

Questions for you: Have you ever burned out from something?  How did you get through it?

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